June 5th, 2020

Hornady Offers New 6mm ARC Cartridge for AR15 Platform

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

A decade-and-a-half ago, our friend Robert Whitley created the 6mmAR, a wildcat based on the 6.5 Grendel necked down to 6mm. The great thing about the 6mmAR cartridge is that is offers superb accuracy with high-BC 6mm bullets, while working in AR15-platform rifles. The 6mmAR feeds and functions using 6.8 SPC or 6.5 Grendel AR magazines. We provided a full report on the 6mmAR way back in 2006.

Hornady Introduces the 6mm ARC Cartridge for AR15 Platform
Now Hornady, with no apparent credit to Whitley’s 6mmAR, has announced a copycat cartridge, which it calls the 6mm ARC (Advanced Rifle Cartridge). Hornady will offer loaded 6mm ARC ammunition and also cartridge brass. In addition Hornady will produce reloading dies, shell plates, modified case, and other accessories. SEE 6mm ARC SAAMI Specification.

Hornady states: “Hornady® is proud to introduce the new 6mm ARC (Advanced Rifle Cartridge). Recently tested, selected and fielded by a specialized group within the U.S. Department of Defense for its multipurpose combat rifle program, the 6mm ARC is a truly versatile cartridge that maximizes the potential of the AR-15 platform.” Hornady Ballistician Jayden Quinlan adds: “We subsequently modeled and tested a variety of designs in different calibers until we were able to produce the most flexible cartridge possible within the limits of the AR-15 system. The 6mm ARC does much of what larger cartridges can and everything that smaller cartridges can’t.”

NOTE: The rim diameter (0.441) and thickness of the 6mm ARC appear to be identical to the 6.5 Grendel as illustrated on page 40 of the SAAMI Industry Standards. From all we can tell, in other dimensions as well, this is a very close copy of Robert Whitley’s 6mmAR, a 6-6.5 Grendel wildcat. For example, 6mm ARC case length is 1.49″ vs. 1.51″ for 6mmAR. The Guns&Ammo report on the 6mm ARC states: “The 6mm ARC is based on the 6.5 Grendel. Hornady started by necking down the cartridge to 6mm and then pulled the shoulder back closer to the case head .030-inch. … Hornady also set maximum chamber pressure low at 52,000 pounds PSI. This slows extraction and makes it much less violent, prolonging the bolt’s life.”

There is an extensive discussion of the 6mm ARC on the Gun University website. You’ll find dimensions and performance numbers for the new cartridge along with videos showing the 6mm ARC cartridge tested in a Barrett AR-type REC7 DI rifle. Read Gun University Story HERE.

More Velocity Than a .223 Rem, Less Weight and Recoil Than a .308 Win
Hornady says the 6mm ARC “delivers substantially better ballistics than the [.223 Rem] and offers a much lighter gun/ammo system with 30% less weight than the AR-10/308 Win system. This new cartridge delivers less felt recoil than larger short-action-based cartridges, yet takes full advantage of modern, heavy-for-caliber 6mm bullets that provide excellent accuracy and ballistic performance at extended range.”

You can see a ballistic comparison between 6mm ARC, .223 Remington, and .308 Winchester in this Hornady chart:

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

Notably, a large number of AR gun-makers have committed to producing rifles or uppers chambered for the 6mm ARC. Some of these are: Adams Arms, Barrett, Brownells, Christensen Arms, GAP, Howa, Mossberg, Noveske, Odin Works, Radical Firearms, and Wilson Combat. In addition Geissele and CMC Triggers are listed as suppliers on Hornady’s 6mm ARC webpage.

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

The Proven Lapua Brass Alternative — 6mmAR and 6mmAR Turbo

If you want 6mm ARC performance in your AR15 with superior case life and consistency, consider doing the 6mmAR or 6mmAR Turbo instead. These are proven designs with winning records in high power competition. Redding produces dies, and complete uppers (with proper Grendel-sized bolt face) are available from 6mmAR.com.

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

Superior Accuracy with Impressive Ballistics
Robert explained to us: “Lapua’s Grendel brass is of exceptional quality, very hard at the back, with a well-annealed neck area, and it has a small primer pocket and small flash hole. When you start with this kind of brass, you have all the ingredients of great accuracy. Necked down to 6mm, it is like a long-bodied 6 PPC, that feeds and shoots well out of an AR-15. This gives you a case that can handle high pressures, with the accuracy pedigree of the 6PPC. It doesn’t get much better than that.”

6mmar 6mmar turbo robert whitley

To create the 6mmAR simply neck-down parent Lapua 6.5 Grendel brass, which has small primer pocket and small flash hole. Case capacity is 36.0 grains of water, filled to over-flowing. (For comparison the 6mm PPC holds about 32.5 grains). To prepare cases, simply run the 6.5 Grendel brass through a Redding 6mmAR full-length sizing die. The FL die’s internal neck diameter (0.267″) is spec’d to deliver about .004″ tension on the bullet–just right for a gas gun. Redding’s 6mmAR dies were built to Whitley’s specs and closely match the actual dimensions of the Lapua brass. This video from Robert Whitley shows how to form 6mmAR cases from Lapua 6.5 Grendel brass.

Velocities: With the recommended medium-burn-rate powders, bullets in the 85- to 90-grain range can be pushed to the 2800 to 2850 fps range. In most 6mmAR rifles, the 105- to 107-grain bullets can be driven to velocities of 2700 to 2750 fps in a 24″ or longer barrel. More speed is possible, but don’t count on it with the average barrel. If you want more speed the 6mmAR Turbo offers additional case capacity. This allows the 6mmAR Turbo to drive the heavier 6mm bullets at velocities close to 6mmBR Norma cartridge levels.

Magazines: The correct magazines are the key to a reliable, competition-worthy system. For best results with the 6mmAR or 6mmAR Turbo, use special 6.8 SPC mags or Alexander Arms Grendel mags. Those specialized mags will provide better reliability than standard .223 Rem/5.56 mags for the AR15.

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June 5th, 2020

Barrett Delivers New 6mm ARC Rifles to U.S. Dept. of Defense

Barrett 6mm ARC REC7 DI rifle

In a preceding story, we revealed the 6mm ARC cartridge from Hornady. This is VERY similar to the 6mmAR cartridge based on the 6.5 Grendel, which was developed by Robert Whitley a decade and a half ago. Hornady developed the 6mm ARC is cooperation with the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), and now the first run of 6mm ARC black rifles is heading to DOD testers. Barrett Firearms Manufacturing, Inc. (“Barrett”) has announced that it has partnered with Hornady to chamber the REC7 rifle series in the new 6mm ARC offering. The first production run of these rifles has been delivered to the U.S. DOD, fulfilling a contract that was awarded to Barrett late last year. READ MORE HERE.

Barrett states: “The combination of the proven REC7 DI gas system and the potent 6mm ARC cartridge creates a product that is consistently accurate and easy to shoot. Carrying 24 rounds in the magazine, the 108 gr. ELD Match bullets leave the 18″ Proof Research match grade stainless steel or carbon fiber barrel at over 2630 fps. This easily gives the rifle supersonic capabilities past 1000 yards.”

In this video Ryan Cleckner (Former U.S. Army Ranger) tests the Barrett REC7 chambered in 6mm ARC:

CLICK HERE for 6mm ARC Cartridge SAAMI Specification »

Barrett anticipates these rifles will be available to the US commercial market after all U.S. Military deliveries have been completed.

Barrett 6mm ARC REC7 DI rifle

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June 4th, 2020

Eye in the Sky — Drone View of 1122-Yard Shooting Session

Texas .223 Rem Drone Video 1000 Yards Gorilla Ammo

Many of our readers have never had a chance to shoot much past 600 yards. How far away does a 1000-yard+ target really seem to the naked eye? Well this short video answers that question. Gorilla Ammo, the video’s producers, used a camera-carrying aerial drone to fly downrange from the firing line all the way out to 1122 yards (and back again). Watch the drone footage at 0:00-0:07 and especially 0:48-1:03. The “bird’s-eye view” really gives you a sense of the distance. The “fly-back” at 0:48-1:03 time-mark is what makes this video worth watching.

The video features prone shooting at steel targets placed at 750 and 1122 yards. We do apologize for the lame, “oh so serious” voice-over which attempts to make this rather ordinary range session seem like some kind of life-changing experience. (Frankly, you may just want to turn the sound off — it’s that annoying.) It’s really not that big a deal to hit steel at 750 yards with a quality AR-15, chambered in .223 Rem, shooting Sierra 77 grain MatchKings.

Texas .223 Rem Drone Video 1000 Yards Gorilla Ammo

Hitting Steel at 1122 Yards with 2540 FPS Ammo Can Be Challenging
The 1122-yard hits are a bit more impressive. Gorilla Ammo lists a relatively sedate 2540 fps Muzzle Velocity for its .223 Rem 77gr SMK ammunition. According to JBM Ballistics, at 1125 yards, that 2540 fps load has 68.3 MOA of drop from a 100-yard zero (firing at sea level and 80° F ambient). Morever the bullet goes trans-sonic around 750 yards (losing stability) and is traveling just 933 fps at impact. And the wind’s the killer — at 1125 yards, with this bullet/load, a mere 2 mph, full-value wind change can move the Point of Impact over three feet!

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June 3rd, 2020

0.8 MOA for 500 Shots at 300 Meters — Sierra Test Tunnel Result

Sierra Bullets 500 round tunnel test

For load development, some guys shoot 3-shot groups. Other guys shoot 5-shot groups, or even 10-shot strings. But for testing its projectiles, Sierra Bullets takes it to another level entirely. A while back Sierra was testing its .30-Caliber 175gr HPBT MatchKing in the Sierra underground tunnel. The results appear above — a FIVE HUNDRED Round group!

500 Shots Form 0.82 MOA Group at 300m (328 yards)
The photo above shows the result of 500 shots taken in a 300 meter test tunnel. Sierra’s trigger-pullers sent five full boxes of bullets down-range at a single target. The raw group size, edge to edge of the farthest shots, is about 3.13 inches, as shown on the calipers’ metal linear scale. Subtract a .308″ nominal bullet diameter* to get the 2.823″ on the digital readout. So you’re seeing a 2.823″ group at 300 meters (328 yards). One MOA at this distance is 3.435″ so this 500-round group is 2.823 divided by 3.435 or 0.82 MOA (0.8218 MOA to be precise).

This 500-round group was shoot as part of a pressure/velocity test for a commercial customer. The cartridge was .308 Winchester, loaded at 2.800″. The powder was Reloder 15. A 26″ barrel was shot from a return to battery rest. The gun was cleaned every 125 rounds and two foulers shot.

What do you think — could you beat this group from a bench for 500 rounds?

One Facebook poster joked: “500-round group? Everyone knows anything less than 1000-round groups are a waste of time and statistically irrelevant.”

Test Tunnel Sierra

Sierra Bullets Test Tunnel Barrels

Sierra’s 300 Meter Testing Tunnel
Ever wonder how (and where) Sierra tests its bullets? The answer is underground, in a 300-meter test tunnel located under Sierra’s factory in Sedalia, Missouri. The photo above shows the construction of the tunnel back in May, 1990. Like most bullet manufacturers, Sierra does live-fire bullet testing of its projectiles. Sierra’s 300-meter test range is the longest, manufacturer-owned underground bullet test facility in the world. Sierra offers free tours of the test tunnel as part of Sierra’s Factory Tour Program.

* Normally, to get an exact group size, you should subtract the TRUE bullet hole size, which is usually smaller than the nominal bullet diameter. E.g. a .308 bullet hole may show on paper as .298 or so. But here, for simplicity, we are subtracting .308″ because we do not have the original target to measure.

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June 2nd, 2020

Go with the “O” — O-Rings May Reduce Run-Out When Sizing

reloading die O-ring
reloading die O-ring

Here’s an inexpensive procedure that can help you load straighter ammo, with slightly better measured concentricity (i.e. less run-out) on the case necks and bullets. Simply use a Rubber O-Ring on the underside of the die locking ring. This allows the die to self-align itself (slightly) to the case that is being sized. Without the O-Ring, if the flat surface on the top of your press is not perfectly square with the thread axis, your die can end up slightly off-angle. This happens when the bottom of the locking ring butts up tight against the top of the press. The O-Ring allows the die to float slightly, and that may, in turn, reduce the amount of run-out induced during case sizing.

Top prone shooter GSArizona has tried this trick and he says it works: “Go to your local hardware store and get a #17 O-Ring (that’s the designation at Ace Hardware, don’t know if its universal). Slip the O-Ring on the die and re-adjust the lock ring so that the O-Ring is slightly compressed when the die is at the correct height. Size and measure a few more cases. You will probably see a slight improvement in neck concentricity as the die can now float a bit as the case enters and leaves it. This isn’t going to be a dramatic improvement, but it’s a positive one.”

We want to stress that adding O-Rings to sizing dies may help some reloaders, but we don’t offer this as a panacea. Try it — if using the O-Ring reduces measured runout that’s great. If it doesn’t, you’ve only spent a few pennies to experiment.

reloading die O-ring

Lee Precision makes die lock rings with built-in O-Rings. Lee’s distinctive lock ring design allows the same kind of self-alignment, which is good. However, Lee lock rings don’t clamp in place on the die threads, so they can move when you insert or remove the dies — and that can throw off your die setting slightly. By using an O-Ring under a conventional die lock ring (that can be locked in place), you get the advantages of the Lee design, without the risk of the lock ring moving.

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May 31st, 2020

Sunday GunDay: Gavin Gear’s .22 LR Bergara B14-R

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

The Bergara B14-R is a high-quality, accurate .22 LR rimfire bolt-action rifle. The rifle’s accuracy and functionality make it a good choice for NRL22 competition. And with stock geometry and ergonomics that duplicate a full-size centerfire rifle, the Bergara B14-R is also an excellent choice for cross-training. By training with a rimfire rifle, you can get essential “trigger time” while saving money. Good centerfire ammo can cost $1.50 per round or more. Decent rimfire ammo can be found for $6.00 per 50rd box. That’s just 12 cents per round.

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire
Click above photo to load full-screen high-rez image.

To find out how well the Bergara B14-R can perform, Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com recently tested a B14-R (carbon-covered barrel version) at his private range. Using a variety of Lapua and SK Ammo, this rig delivered impressive results. Watch this video to see the B14-R in action.

“The B14-R is a great shooter, and for me it felt very familiar. Just like shooting one of my centerfire match guns, but without all of the recoil!” — Gavin Gear

Gavin reports: “At the 2020 SHOT Show, Bergara announced the B14-R trainer. The concept? Take the B14 HMR series centerfire rifle formula, and adapt it for rimfire. The result is a .22 LR rifle you can shoot all day long without wearing out your arm or your wallet! It looks/feels like a centerfire long-range precision rifle. And that’s what makes this rifle a GREAT training platform for serious long-range shooters.”

The B14-R comes with a 18″-long 1:16″-twist threaded barrel. The single-stack .22 LR magazine is the same size as a short action AICS mag. The Bergara B14-R shares Rem 700 specs, so it is compatible with Rem 700 stocks and aftermarket triggers. Weight with standard barrel is 9.2 pounds without optics, or 8.1 pounds for the carbon version seen here. MSRP for basic version is $1150.00 and street price is $950.00.

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Gavin told us: “I couldn’t wait to get the B14-R out to my new 50-yard ridgeline range to see how it would perform with premium .22 LR ammunition. Once I shot this rifle suppressed, I didn’t want to take off the can. The 18″ barrel really works well with the SilcencerCo suppressor to help keep the overall length reasonable, and balance is spot-on.” NOTE: This rifle has the optional carbon-covered barrel.

As tested, the rifle was equipped with these components:

Athlon Midas TAC 6-14x50mm FFP Scope with MK Machine lever, Lone Star bubble level
SilencerCo Omega 300 Suppressor with 1/2×28 direct thread mount
Harris S-BRM 6″-9″ Bipod with aftermarket swivel tension lever

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Outstanding Accuracy with Lapua and SK .22 LR Ammo

Remarkable accuracy for a factory rifle earned this Bergara its Sunday GunDay selection. Shooting with bipod and rear sandbag, Gavin was able to achieve multiple, sub-half-inch groups at 50 yards. The best group shot with SK Match ammo was a remarkable 0.22″ as measured by Ballistic-X software (see below). That’s an impressive 0.42 MOA at 50 yards. If you watch the video above, starting at 14:40 time-mark, you can watch Gavin shoot that 0.22″ group.

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Here are two more groups, both under 0.5″ at 50 yards. Lapua Center-X on left, SK Match on right. Gavin says that “with good conditions, 0.35″ 5-shot groups at 50 yards are easily attainable.”

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

B14-R Trigger Tested with TriggerScan TS-11

Gavin tested the Bergara’s trigger with the TriggerScan TS-11 from DVORAK Instruments, a very sophisticated, high-tech device. Gavin states: “This trigger works well, and mine was adjustable down to just over 2-lb peak force for pull weight. I ran a 3-scan pass on the B14-R trigger with the pull weight set to minimum [barely over 2 pounds].”

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Gavin notes: “You can see how consistent this trigger is by how well the scan graph plots overlap! This trigger is great for an out-of-the-box rifle like this, and it’s great to know that I can always swap out triggers and use the same exact Remington 700-compatible trigger that I’m running in my match guns.”

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Bergara Test Gavin Gear ultimate reloader B14-R rimfire

Gavin Gear’s Closing Thoughts — More to Come
The Bergara B14-R rimfire trainer has been a great rifle to shoot and has exceeded my expectations. The B14-R feels like a full-size PRS rifle, has the same basic features, but is chambered in .22 LR. I have been amazed by the accuracy I’ve achieved with this rifle with Lapua and SK match ammunition — it’s very confidence inspiring.

This rifle feels right and shoots great. I can’t wait to get more steel targets setup, and to go deeper into calculating dope for the ammunition I will shoot with this rifle. Perhaps I’ll think about competing in an NRL22 match at some point. If you are looking for a rimfire trainer, look at the Bergara B14-R for sure. It checks all of my boxes for this type of rifle!

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May 28th, 2020

Cartridge Headspace 101 — Understanding the Basics

Brownells Headspace Gauge cutaway chamber drawing SAAMI ANSI

Do you know what the inside of a rifle chamber (and throat zone) really looks like? Do you understand the concept of headspace and why it’s important? If not, you should read the Brownells GunTech article Gauging Success – Minimum Headspace and Maximum COL. This article explains the basics of headspace and shows how to measure headspace (and length to lands) in your barrels with precision. The article also explains how to adjust your full-length sizing dies to “bump the shoulder” as needed.

Why is headspace important? The article explains: “Controlling headspace and setting proper C.O.L. also represent improved safety and reduced cost of handloading. Excessive headspace can cause case head separation and gases in excess of 60,000 PSI escaping from a rifle’s chamber. Too little headspace can result in a chamber forced bullet crimp and a bullet that becomes an obstruction more than a properly secured projectile. Excessive C.O.L. can result in a rifling-bound bullet, a condition that could result in spikes of excessive pressure.” [Editor’s NOTE: It is common for competitive benchrest shooters to seat bullets into the rifling. This can be done safely if you reduce your loads accordingly. With some bullets we often see best accuracy .010″ (or more) into the lands. However, this can generate more pressure than the same bullet seated .010″ away from initial lands contact. As with all reloading, start low and work up gradually.]

Brownells Headspace Gauge cutaway chamber drawing SAAMI ANSI

How is headspace specified? Most cartridges used within the United States are defined within ANSI/SAAMI Z299.3-4. Brownells explains: “In the case of the .243 Winchester, as an example, there are pressure specifications, cartridge drawings and, as pictured above, chamber drawings. Armed with a chamber drawing, each manufacturer producing a firearm for the .243 Winchester knows the proper standard dimension to cut chambers and set headspace. Notice there are two headspace reference dimensions for the chamber. The upper is a place in the chamber where the shoulder is .400″ in diameter; the “datum” or “basic” line. The lower is the 1.630″~1.640″ minimum – maximum dimension from the breech face (bolt face) to that point in the chamber that measures .400″.”

The actual headspace of any firearm is the distance from the breech face to the point in the chamber that is intended to prevent forward motion of a cartridge.

Finding Cartridge Length to Lands with OAL Gauge
Using a comparator on a set of calipers, you can quickly determine catridge base-to-ogive length. This is the measurement from the base of the case to the forward-most full diameter section of the bullet, typically called the ogive. Shown here, that ogive is 0.243″ diameter.

The next step is using a modified (threaded) case with a Hornady OAL tool to determine Length-to-Lands (LTL) in your rifle’s chamber. During this measurement process, the modified case, with a bullet in its neck, is inserted in the chamber. Go slow, take your time. Here are 5 tips that will help you get repeatable and reliable LTL measurements:

1. Start with a clean chamber and clean barrel throat.
2. Make sure the modified case is fully screwed down and seated on the OAL Gauge. It can sometimes unscrew a bit during repeated measurements.
3. Insert the modified case slowly and gently, but ensure the shoulder of the modified case is fully seated on the end of the chamber.
4. Push the gray plastic rod GENTLY. It is common for the bullet to be tilted a bit. You want to allow the bullet to self-center in the throat BEFORE you apply much pressure. Then tap a couple times and push until you feel resistance. Do NOT push too hard — that will jam the bullet in the lands.
5. Repeat the measurement at least 3 more times. If you follow our instructions, you should, typically, get a repeatable measurement, within 0.0015″ or so, 3 out of 4 times.

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May 26th, 2020

Long Range Precision Video Series — Season 1 and 2

Ballistic Magazine Long Range Precision video series 1 2

Long Range Precision (LRP) is a useful series of videos product by Ballistic Magazine and sponsored by Remington, Barnes Bullets, and Eotech. All six of the Season 1 LRP videos are embedded below for easy “binge watching”. In addition, all seven Season 2 episodes can be watched online on BallisticMag.com.

In this video series host Sean Utley covers many gear-related topics including rifle configuration, scope selection, chambering choices, ammunition options, bipods/tripods, and chronographs. In addition, the series covers training methods, bullet ballistics, wind reading, and rifle handling.

Most of this is pretty basic stuff, but it can be helpful for newcomers to long range shooting. For example, Season 1 Episode 4 covers chambering options including 6.5 Creedmoor and .308 Winchester.

Season 1, Episode 1: Anatomy of a Long Range Precision Rifle

Season 1, Episode 2: Foundations of Long Range Shooting

Season 1, Episode 3: Mechanics of Long Range Shooting

Season 1, Episode 4: Best Calibers for Long Range Shooting

Season 1, Episode 5: Anatomy of Bullet Flight

Season 1, Episode 6: Critical Equipment for Long Range Shooting

Watch Latest Long Range Precision Season 2 Videos

Along with all these Season 1 videos, there are seven Season 2 videos available on BallisticMag.com. Season 2, Episode 2 is a good video on Adjusting for Wind. And if you are interested in learning how Doppler Radar is used to develop bullet designs, we recommend Episode 7 from Season 2. This 7-minute video covers the latest technology in ballistics radar. CLICK HERE to watch video.

Ballistic Magazine Long Range Precision video series 1 2

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May 25th, 2020

How and Why Does BC Vary with Velocity — Listen to Podcast

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslickBerger Ballistics Experts in 10-Part Podcast Series
Berger Bullets is presenting a 10-part Podcast series on bullet design and ballistics. Bryan Litz and Emil Praslick III are the featured guests for a 10-part Sniper’s Hide Podcast series about Ballistics. These 10 Podcasts aredelivered through The Everyday Sniper podcast platform. The series will help listeners learn more about Ballistic Coefficients (BCs), why BC consistency is important, and how BC effects both accuracy and precision.

In this 10-part series, Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics and Wind Wizard Emil Praslick talk with Sniper’s Hide head honcho Frank Galli. Along with Ballistics, the 10 podcasts will cover a variety of shooting-related topics including: long range shooting, precision rifle builds, training, wind effects, industry updates, and more. The key features of the podcasts are also explain in print articles by Bryan Litz found at BergerBullets.com/NoBSBC.

LISTEN to BC Podcast Number Two »

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

How and Why Bullet BC Varies with Velocity
Podcast Episode 2 focuses on how Ballistics Coefficients Vary with Velocity and why that matters. Listen to Berger Chief Ballistician Bryan Litz and Mil/LE Tactical Expert, Emil Praslick, talk shop about bullet design, modern BC measurement techniques, and the importance of BC consistency for long-range precision and minimal vertical dispersion. READ Bryan Litz BC Variation Analysis HERE.

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

LISTEN to BC PodCast Number One »

The 10-part podcast series kicked off May 1, 2020. Each podcast is an in-depth discussion of Berger’s bi-weekly “No-BS BCs” ballistics articles, authored by Bryan Litz, Berger’s Chief Ballistician. In Episode One, linked below, Litz defined BC and its purpose. As the series continues, the experts explain why BC consistency is the most important factor in long-range bullet performance. Learn more about “The Everyday Sniper” BC podcast series at NoBSBC.com.

“This is a great opportunity to open up our platform to Berger with Bryan and Emil. Giving people this kind of access through the partnership is a Masterclass opportunity for anyone interested in long range shooting”, stated Frank Galli.

Podcast Schedule and Topics

Berger Bryan Litz Podcast The Everyday Sniper Sniper's Hide Frank Galli emil praslick

To learn more about Berger’s No-BS BCs and to read Bryan Litz’s bi-weekly articles, visit NoBSBC.com and Bergerbullets.com.

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May 25th, 2020

Lapua Monarch Cup Silhouette Event Postponed to 2021

Lapua silhouette monarch cup Canada mexico usa

With the Nationals Championships for Smallbore Rifle Silhouette cancelled in Canada, USA, and Mexico, the 2020 Lapua Monarch Cup has been postponed until 2021. For more information on the Lapua Monarch Cup visit LapuaMonarchCup.com.

“In light of the current global health situation surround COVID-19, the Monarch Cup Board of Directors made the difficult decision to postpone the Lapua Monarch Cup from 2020 to 2021″, stated Monarch Cup Director, Daniel Salazer. “The uncertainty regarding international travel and the concern for the safety of our friends and competitors, led to this very disappointing decision. We vow to make the 2021 Lapua Monarch Cup an event to remember.”

Lapua silhouette monarch cup Canada mexico usa

The Lapua Monarch Cup was slated to be 2020’s elite event of the silhouette shooting world. The Cup was to be hosted in three different countries: Canada, Mexico, and the United States. Events were planned throughout the summer and fall of 2020. Competitors earn points from each match within their respective classification (Master, AAA, AA, & A), giving all shooters an opportunity for $25,000 in cash prizes. But now that will be moved to 2021.

“Lapua is saddened that this difficult decision had to be made, but we know it’s the right one”, stated Adam Braverman, Director of Sales and Marketing. “The board and Lapua’s top priority is for the health and safety of the international shooting community. However, we are excited to announce that we will continue as the Title Sponsor of the Monarch Cup for 2021.”

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May 24th, 2020

Bargain Finder 244: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

Memorial Day Weekend Edition — Some Sales End Monday Night!!

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Brownells — Memorial Day Super Sale, up to 56% Off

brownell memorial day sale

Brownells is running a big Memorial Weekend Sale right now. You’ll find dozens of popular products at significant discounts — up to 56% Off. Save on AR Lowers/Uppers, Triggers, Optics, Chassis Systems, Magazines, Tools, Ammo and more. But you don’t want to delay too long — Brownells Memorial Weekend Sale runs through 11:59 pm on Monday, May 25, 2020. There are hundreds of products on sale including: Barreled Actions, Chassis Systems, Hunting Stocks, Priming Tools, Electronic Earmuffs, Berger Bullets, Leupold Scopes, Leica Rangefinders, Lapua Ammunition, S&W .22 LR Pistols and much more.

2. Natchez — Rock Chucker Supreme Press, $149.99

rock chucker supreme sale

Over the past few weeks we’ve featured a number of complete reloading kits but many folks really just need a strong, versatile, and reliable single-stage press. If that’s what you’re looking for, Natches has the Rock Chucker Supreme for only $149.99. Excellent deal — this press sells for up to $190.00 elsewhere. Rock Chuckers can be used for a multitude of reloading tasks. These strong presses have legendary durability and RCBS backs the Rock Chucker with a great warranty.

3. Action Target — 15% Off ALL Steel Targets

action target steel target sale memorial day 15%

Action Target sells some of the best reactive targets you can buy. They have a full range of steel targets, from ground targets as shown above to dueling trees, gongs, spinners, falling plates, large torso targets — you name it. Right now ALL Action Target Steel Targets are 15% Off. Go to ActionTarget.com and use Code MEMORIAL15 during checkout. Action Target also sells a wide variety of printed paper targets but the discount applies to steel only.

4. Bruno’s — $75 Off BAT Actions, 10% Off McMillan Stocks

bruno shooters supply memorial day sale

Bruno Shooters Supply is offering great savings on premier products. Right now BAT Actions (rarely discounted) are $75 Off while McMillan Stocks are 10% Off. If you’ve got an F-Class, Benchrest, or ELR project in the works, you may want to jump on these offers. Plus right now Bruno’s is offering Free Shipping on Krieger Barrels and/or Free Shipping on orders over $119.95 (restrictions apply).

5. Amazon– Caldwell Pistol/Rifle Steady Rest, $20.61

caldwell steady rest

At $20.61 you can’t go wrong with this Caldwell Steady Rest, even if you use it just for pistols, or sighting in hunting rifles. Use the front section by itself as a pistol rest, or connect both units for rifle use. We’ve used this for pistols and it worked very well — the design provides a nice handrest. Lightweight yet stable, the Caldwell Steady Rest is easy to store, easy to transport, and ultra-affordable.

6. Sportsmans Warehouse — Liberty Flag Safe, $699.99

liberty flag safe

In uncertain times keeping your guns and other possesions safe is more critical than ever. When it comes to safes, Liberty is one of the best in its price range and we found this Liberty Flag Safe on sale. These are well made safes that will stand the test of time and this one actually features a digital keypad and a subtle but cool flag design on the front. Keep in mind the sale price is for in-store pick up only.

7. Remington — 15% OFF Site-Wide

remington memorial day sale

Here’s a deal you don’t see very often. The Remington Store is running a massive sale on everything on their site. Check out the Remington 15% off site wide and get discounts parts, accessories, rifle cases, gun care products and more. This is a good deal on merchandise that rarely goes on sale.

8. Palmetto Armory — Smith & Wesson M&P Shield 9mm, $289.99

s&w m&p sale

Here’s a good ultra-compact carry pistol that is reliable, accurate and backed by a rock-solid warranty. The Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm shield. This single-stack 9mm has a 7+1 capacity and weighs just 19 ounces unloaded. DAO pull-weight is 6.5 pounds. If you’re looking for something larger check out the Smith & Wesson M&P EZ 9mm which features a full size grip and accessory rail.

9. Amazon — Steiner 10×25 Military-Marine Binoculars, $187.97

“Steiner

Here’s a great deal on rugged binoculars — just $187.97 on Amazon. With 10x magnification and a wide 300 foot field of view the Steiner 10×25 Military-Marine binoculars provide fast and easy focus.. With these binoculars you set the focus with the diopters. Then everything from 20 yards to infinity is sharp. You can also grab the 8×30 model for only $249.99 — that’s the model used by our Editor.

10. Optics Planet — 10% Off All Wheeler Engineering Tools

wheeler tool sale

Wheeler Engineering makes a wide selection of cleverly-designed, firearms-focused tools. For AR owners, Wheeler tools solve problems everyone faces, making cleaning and maintenance tasks easier to perform. Right now Optics Planet is offering 10% off all Wheeler Tools. We’ve highlighted some great AR-platform Wheeler tools, but there are many other Wheeler products on sale also.

11. Amazon — Reusable Silica Gel Desiccant, $12.79

silica gel desicant

To protect your valuable firearms from corrosion, it’s important to avoid moisture build-up inside your gunsafe. It’s smart to have a Goldenrod, but you’ll also want something to absorb moisture. These reusable Silica gel desiccant cans do a great job of keeping moisture levels under control. NOTE: You can “re-condition” this canister easily. Simply put the cannister in your oven to dry out moisture and then return it to the safe. With regular drying cycles, these canisters will function for a very long time.

12. Amazon– Magnetic Charging Cables, 4-pack $22.99

magnetic charging cables

Do you own countless electronics along with tablets or phones to run them all? If you’re like us, keeping your Labradar and Shotmarker charged plus other accessories requires a myriad of cables. Simplify your life by getting a set of Magnetic Charging Cables. The beauty of using this system is that you only need one cord to charge your Apple, micro-USB, and USB-C devices plus an added benefit is that you aren’t wearing out the charging ports. This Amazon’s Choice kit has four cables (1′,3′,6′,6′) plus multiple tips. We produced a video showing how these Charging Cords work. Check it out:

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May 23rd, 2020

How to Hydro-Form Cartridge Brass — Dasher Video

6mm Dasher hydroforming case die hornady

Can you form a wildcat cartridge such as the 6 Dasher without expending primer, powders, and bullets? Absolutely. Using the hydro-forming method you can form improved cases in your workshop with no firing whatsoever, so there is no wear on your precious barrel. Watch this video to see how it’s done:

6 Dasher Case Hydro-Forming Demonstration:

Forum member Wes J. (aka P1ZombieKiller) has produced a helpful video showing how to form Dasher cases use the Hornady Hydraulic forming die kit. This includes a two-part die (body and piston), and a special shell holder. To form the case, you insert a primer in your virgin brass, top the case off with with a fluid (water or alcohol), then run the case up into the Hydro-forming die. A few stout whacks with a hammer and your case is 95% formed.

6mm Dasher hydroforming hydraulic 6mmBR hornadyHydro-Forming Procedure Step-by-Step:
1. Insert spent primer in new 6mmBR brass case.
2. Fill with water or alcohol (Wes prefers alcohol).
3. Wipe excess fluid off case.
4. Place case in special Hornady shell-holder (no primer hole).
5. Run case up into Hydraulic forming die.
6. Smack top piston of forming die 3-4 times with rubber mallet or dead-blow hammer.
7. Inspect case, re-fill and repeat if necessary.
8. Drain alcohol (or water) into container.
9. Remove primer (and save for re-use).
10. Blow-dry formed case. Inspect and measure formed case.

Wes achieves very uniform cartridge OALs with this method. He measured ten (10) hydro-formed 6 Dasher cases and got these results: two @ 1.536″; 2 @ 1.537″; and 6 @ 1.538″.

Three or Four Whacks Produces a 95%-Formed Case
With a Hornady hydro-forming die, hydraulic pressure does the job of blowing out the shoulders of your improved case. The process is relatively simple. Place a spent primer in the bottom of a new piece of brass. Fill the case with water, and then slip it into a special Hornady shell-holder with no hole in the middle. Then you run the case up into the forming die. Now comes the fun part. You gently insert a plunger (hydraulic ram) from the top, and give it three or four stiff whacks with a mallet (or better yet, a dead-blow hammer). Remove the plunger and you have a 95% formed case, ready to load.

Walter Queen Hydraulic Hornady DieSpecial Shell-Holder
Hornady supplies a shell holder made specifically for the hydro die; there’s no hole in the bottom of it. Just insert a spent primer into the primer pocket and you’re ready to go. The spent primer, combined with the solid shell holder, keeps the water from seeping out of the primer pocket. The primer pushes out a little bit during this process, but it’s impossible for it to come out because of the way the shell holder is designed. The shell holder has a grove which allows the case to slide out of the shell holder even when the primer protrudes a bit.

Story tip from Body Allen. We welcome reader submissions.

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May 22nd, 2020

Caldwell Brass Retriever — Handy Item That Saves Your Back

Caldwell pistol rifle cartridge brass rake retriever handle

Caldwell Brass Retriever
Tired of bending over or kneeling down to retrieve your fired cartridge brass? For older shooters (including this Editor) getting down on the ground to pick up brass is tough on the lower back and knees. Here’s a product that makes brass retrieval quick, easy, and pain-free. The Caldwell Brass Retriever works quite well with a little practice, once you apply the correct pressure. While it won’t always grab every fired case, it will capture nearly all, and that can really make the job go much faster.

One owner praises this as a “very good tool” that is “a lot easier on my back.” While it can work on grass, gravel, and hard-packed earth, the unit works best on smooth, hard surfaces. Currently priced under $37, it is a good value.

Caldwell states: “Spend less time bending over and picking up brass at the range and more time shooting. The Caldwell® Brass Retriever picks up brass, saving your back and time. Picking up spent brass is as easy as pushing a mop. The Brass Retriever can pick up rifle and pistol brass quickly and efficiently. The Brass Retriever works anywhere, even on grass and gravel. The retriever comes complete with a roll cage separator that allows you to dump the collected brass into a bucket quickly. It is collapsible as well, making it convenient to transport. The retriever’s handle expands from 28″ up to 57″ tall.”

Caldwell pistol rifle cartridge brass rake retriever handle

Brass Retriever Owner Reviews
Here are Amazon reviews from actual purchases. It’s clear the device is not perfect and can miss a case or two. However, as you can see from the videos, the Brass Retriever does pick the vast major of brass on the ground, sized .223 Rem or larger diameter. This will save time and reduces stress on your back and joints:

“This thing … does a terrific job of collecting the brass from a standing posture quickly and efficiently. It helps to have the cases on a smooth surface like concrete or dirt without a lot of vegetation. But we used it on open desert yesterday and it collected nearly every case with a single pass. It’s now a permanent piece of gear in the stuff we take when target or ground squirrel shooting.” — Hans H.

“This WILL save your back. The only drawback is you can’t overload it with brass. After couple dozen pieces (or less) it will start dropping brass while you’re attempting to collect others. That’s the limitation (one of them). There is a short learning curve (15 min.) in which you’ll learn how much brass is too much And how you need to orientate the wires to pick up the brass. It doesn’t do as well on gravel or high grass as it does on a smooth, firm surface. Even with its limitations, it’s a keeper. Just empty every dozen or so pieces and it works very well. It comes with a wire form that attaches to a bucket for easy emptying. I normally just use my fingers to spread wires and give a shake to allow the contents to fall out. Again not perfect but when used within its design capabilities, it does pretty well. I would buy again.” — Jeff M.

“It’s not perfect. But neither is using a broom or picking it up by hand. Sure, a 9mm might drop out while you’re picking up a .45 ACP. But you roll back over the 9mm and pick it up again. I now pick up my brass in a fraction of the time it used to take me and I stand upright while doing it. I should add the disclaimer that I’ve only used it to pick up handgun brass and it’s picked up everything from .22 LR to .44 Magnum. I have not tried it with rifle brass.” — Johnny C.

Caldwell pistol rifle cartridge brass rake retriever handleSpecialized Tool for .22 LR Brass
NOTE: The Caldwell Brass Retriever is designed primarily to recover reloadable rifle and pistol brass, with case diameters as fat as .223 Rem or larger. Some people state it can be used for smaller .22 LR cartridges too, but there is a much better product for that.

The UniqueTek Rimfire Brass Wizard is optimized for picking up .22 LR rimfire cases. It has a smaller basket with wires spaced closer together. It can also pick up pistol and rifle cartridge brass but will hold fewer cases than the original Brass Wizard or the Caldwell Brass Retriever.

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May 18th, 2020

Bargain Finder 243: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Graf & Sons — Huge 25% Off Sightron Optics Sale — All Scopes

graf and sons sightron scope optics sale 25% off discount

If you’re looking for a high-magnification zoom optic for matches and long-range shooting, here is one of the best Optics Sales of the year. Now at Graf’s get 25% off the entire inventory of Sightron optics — riflescopes as well as spotting scopes, red dot sights, and binoculars. There are some truly great deals here. For example, the 10-50x60mm SIII for $817.49, or a 3-16x42mm S-TAC for just $292.49. There are over 150 items discounted 25% — you should really check out this sale.

2. CDNN Sports — Remington 770 Rifle with Scope, $249.99

remington 770 discount hunting rifle .243 win winchester

Looking for a first hunting rifle for a family member, with the Remington heritage? Check out this Rem 770 package with 3-9X40mm scope. As this is our Deals of the Week #243, we looked for a .243 Winchester. We found both Standard and Youth model .243 Wins are just $249.99. Other Rem 770 scoped rifle packages are available from CDNN for just $249.99 in all these popular chamberings: .270 Win, .30-06, 7mm Rem Mag, .30-06, and .300 Win Mag. All these rifles come with a pre-mounted 3-9x40mm riflescope. The Rem 770 features an ergonomic stock with raised cheekpiece and textured grip and forearm.

3. Amazon — 42″ Double Long Gun Case Backpack, $63.71

Savior Tactical Double Rifle case pistol pack backpack

The Savior Tactical Double Rifle case will hold TWO rifles, plus a large pistol. This case has nice thick padding, plenty of pockets, AND comfortable shoulder straps so you can carry it like a backpack. Shown above is the 42″x12″ Flat Dark Earth (Tan) version, $63.71 on Amazon. Along with the 42″-long case, there are 36″, 46″, 51″, and 55″ models. The 55″ Savior Tactical case ($86.53 on Amazon) is big enough for most PRS rifles, even with long barrels. These gun cases also come in OD Green, Black, and Gray.

4. Amazon — Vortex 20-60x60mm Angled Spotting Scope, $399

vortex spotting scope

Whether hunting or target shooting, spotting scopes get you on target faster and easier than bare eyes or riflescope. If you need a good all-purpose spotter, check out the Vortex Diamondback 20-60x60mm angled spotting scope for $399.00. It offers great clarity and rock-solid lifetime guarantee. There’s also a straight version for just $349.95, with same 20-60X power and 60mm objective. If you need more low-light ability, the Vortex 20-60x80mm spotter is $499.00, angled or straight.

5. Brownells — Walker’s Ear and Eye Protection, 20% Off Sale

walkers brownells earmuffs muffs eye hearing protection sale electronic game ears

All shooters need quality hearing protection. We recommend safety glasses for all disciplines. Right now you can get up to 20% OFF Walker’s Ear and Eye Protection. Save on standard muffs, electronic muffs, ear-plugs, game-ear systems, and shooting glasses. There are also combo muffs/glasses packages at big discounts. You’ll find plenty of bargains — shooting glasses starting at $5.99 and muffs under $15.00.

6. Midsouth Shooters — Tipton Cleaning Rod Rack, $6.88

Tipton cleaning rod rack mount sale midsouth Shooters

Want to organize all your cleaning rods? The Tipton Cleaning Rod Rack holds up to six (6) cleaning rods of various lengths and handle types. There are molded bumpers for T-Handle rods plus hanging hooks on either end for additional accessories. Right now this rack is on sale for just $6.88, complete with mounting holes and screws.

7. Natchez — Sale on EarMuffs, Eye Protection, Targets & More

muffs targets hearing protection Natchez Kestrel

Natchez Shooters Supplies is running a big Spring Range Day Sale right now, with substantial savings on a variety of products. Earmuffs and shooting glasses are deeply discounted, and and AR500 target plate with stand is 45% off. CLICK HERE to see all 29 featured items.

8. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Nikon 1000i Rangefinder, $179.99

nikon lrf laser rangefinder 1000i prostaff sale sportsman's warehouse

Nikon’s ProStaff 1000i Laser Rangefinder boasts 6-power optics, good controls, Incline/Decline Technology, and a rugged, rainproof case. This unit offers 1000-yard ranging capability — plenty for hunting or varminting. The ProStaff 1000i offers switchable Horizontal Distance / Actual Distance display mode. At just $179.99, this Nikon LRF is a bargain. The same unit costs $200 or more elsewhere.

9. MidwayUSA — Tipton Jag Sets Brass or Nickel-Plated 25% Off

Tipton jag kit nickle-plated brass 25% off sale

If you shoot a variety of calibers, you need one of these Jag Kits, now 25% Off. You get 13 different diameter jags in a fitted case for under $15.00. That’s a steal. We like the Nickel-Plated Ultra Brass Jags (25% off price $14.09) because you don’t get “false positive” blue from your solvent interacting with the jag itself. But the regular Solid Brass Jags (25% Off price $12.74) also work great and some folks think they are more durable. We own these Jag kits and use them for everything from a .17 HMR up to a 45/70. Both kits contain 13 jags covering these calibers: .17, .20, .22, .243/6mm, .25/6.5mm, .270/7mm, .30, .338/8mm, .35/9mm, .375, .40, .44 and .45. NOTE: MidwayUSA’s product title states there are 12 Nickle-Plated Jags. However the Nickle-Plated Jag Kit photo shows thirteen (13), the description lists 13, Tipton’s Website shows 13, and that’s what we got in our Nickle-Plated Jag Kit.

10. Amazon — Two Rolls of 3″ Neon Target Stickers, $12.99

Red Orange Neon 3

We like these bright, Neon 3″ target stickers. These are big enough to see at 600 yards, providing a 1/2 MOA target center at that distance. For $12.99 at Amazon.com, you get 250 3″-diameter self-adhesive circles (125 targets per roll). The high-contrast fluorescent red/orange color provides an excellent HI-VIZ aiming point, along with good contrast for bullet holes within the 3″ circle. To help line up your reticle cross-hairs, the target centers feature black markers at 3, 6, 9, and 12 0’Clock.

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May 17th, 2020

Super-Slow-Motion Firearms Highlight Reel

Bullet theory films slow motion slo-mo ultra high speed camera video

Here’s an stunning highlight reel created by Bullet Theory Films, a Los Angeles-based production company that specializes in capturing action that is too quick for the human eye to see. Using ultra-high-speed cameras, these talented film-makers have captured blindingly fast phenomena — things that happen in micro-seconds. The resulting video imagery can be used for R&D, scientific analysis, product marketing, or (of course) entertainment.

We recommend you watch this video full-screen in High-Definition:

This impressive slo-mo “sizzle reel” features many notable sequences, including:

00:18: .45 ACP leaving m1911 muzzle
00:27: Rifle bullet penetrating barrier with explosive ejecta
00:33: M1A cycling 7.62×51 cartridges
00:38: Pistol bullet disintegrating on steel
00:40: Huge muzzle flame from 12ga shotgun and lead shot on steel
00:45: 5.56 bullet in ballistics gelatin with secondary explosion
01:07: Handgun flame ring from muzzle
01:11: Massive shotgun blast with slug in midair

About the Film-Makers
Bullet Theory Films Co-Founders Matt Novello and Matt Drake first met on the set of History Channel’s highly successful competition reality show TOP SHOT. Throughout five seasons, the show set a benchmark in the art of capturing firearms and live ammunition in action, which has yet to be surpassed.

Utilizing the latest digital high speed technology, Bullet Theory Films offers a full range of production services; from concept development, to the final delivery of your vision. For more information, visit BulletTheoryFilms.com.

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May 17th, 2020

Choosing the Best Neck Bushing Size — Tips from John Whidden

John Whidden Dies Neck Bushing diameter reloading

Whidden Gunworks makes great sizing and seating dies. The Whidden full-length sizing die with neck bushing is very popular because it allows you to “tune” the neck tension by using different bushings, with larger or smaller inside diameters. In this video, John Whidden explains how to choose a the right bushing size for use with your neck-sizing and full-length sizing bushing dies.

For most applications, John suggest starting with the caliper-measured outside diameter of a loaded cartridge (with your choice of bullet), and then SUBTRACT about three thousandths. For example, if your loaded round mics at .333, then you would want to start with a 0.330 neck bushing. John notes, however, that you may want to experiment with bushings, going down a thousandth and up a thousandth. With thin In addition, as your brass ages and the necks harden, you may want to change your bushing size.

John Whidden Dies Neck Bushing diameter reloadingQuick Tip: Try Flipping Your Bushings
You may also want to experiment with “flipping” your neck bushings to alternate the side that first contacts the neck of the case. (One side of the bushing is usually marked with the size, while the other side is unmarked.) So try “number side up” as well as “number side down”.

Some folks believe that one side of the bushing may allow a smoother entry, and that this can enhance concentricity. Other people think they can get very slightly more or less neck tension depending on how the bushing is oriented. This is a subtle effect, but it costs nothing to experiment.

If one bushing orientation proves better you can mark the “up” side with nail polish so that you can always orient the bushing optimally. NOTE: We have confirmed that some bushings are actually made with a slight taper. In addition, bushings may get distorted slightly when the brand name and size is stamped. Therefore there IS a reason to try both orientations.

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May 11th, 2020

Bargain Finder 242: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Cabela’s — Thompson/Center Compass Rifle, $239.97

thompson center

Hunting season will be here in a few more months. If you need a new hunting rifle check out the Thompson/Center Compass in .270 Win or .30-06 Springfield. On sale now for just $239.97, these T/C rifles feature Free-floated 5R barrel, 3-lug bolt, lightweight synthetic stock with aluminum pillars, adjustable trigger, and 3-position safety. A detachable, rotary magazine is also included. NOTE: Cabela’s also has this rifle in .22-250 Rem for $259.97, still a great deal.

2. Amazon — Frankford Arsenal Intellidropper, $199.95

frankford arsenal intellidropper

There are many good digital powder scale/dispensers on the market. But one of the best new-generation machines is the Frankford Arsenal Intellidroper. This offers excellent controls, good drop speed and +/- 0.10 grain accuracy, plus an easy-to-use Mobile App. Right now on Amazon you can get the advanced Intellidropper for under $200! If you’re looking for a new “smart” digital powder dispenser with advanced features, this is an excellent deal. Intellidropper Review HERE.

3. Bruno Shooters Supply — Huge Primer Sale

primer sale

As primers have outstanding long-term shelf life, it makes sense to purchase primers in quantity when they are available at attractive prices. Right now Bruno Shooters Supply is running a huge PRIMER SALE featuring every brand and style in stock. Here’s a great opportunity to get a good supply of primers at attractive prices.

4. Camera Land — Konus 20-60x100mm Spotting Scope, $179.99

konus konaspot spotting scpe

Spotting scopes are vital tools for shooters. But they can be pricey, especially those with large front objective lenses. Enter the Konus KonuSpot-100 20-60x100mm. The big 100mm objective gathers more light — good for low-light shooting and observing. For the money, this is a surprisingly good spotter (though don’t expect it to compare with a high-end Kowa, Swaro, or Zeiss). And if you order now you can get a camera adapter, carry case, lens cleaning cloth, and smartphone adapter at no extra charge.

5. Midsouth — RCBS Partner Press Reloading Kit, $223.86

rcbs sale

With the stay-at-home orders, many shooters are using their new free time to get started in reloading. For novice reloaders, it makes sense to start with a kit that has most of the tools you need. The very affordable RCBS Partner Press Reloading Kit comes with Press, Powder Scale, Powder Funnel, Loading Block, Lube Tray, Neck Brushes, Dubur Tool, Load Manual and more. These Partner Presses work well for loading at the range, or use the compact Partner as a second press for depriming or bullet seating.

6. 5.11 Tactical Gear — 20% Off Site-Wide

5.11 tactical gear sale

5.11 is one of the top manufacturers of tactical gear. You’ll see 5.11 pants, bags, and shoes on the firing line at matches. And many first responders use 5.11 gear. Right now 5.11 Tactical is running a 20% off EVERYTHING SALE. That’s right — everything on 511tactical.com is on sale! What’s more, there is free shipping on orders over $35. Plus if you use Code ‘TOGETHER’ at checkout, you can get a free keychain multi-tool.

7. Sportsman’s Warehouse — All Howard Leight Products on Sale

howard leight sale

Need to upgrade your eye protection and/or hearing protection? Do your current muffs suffer from busted electronics or worn-out ear cups? Well here’s a great opportunity to save big on ear and eye protection. Right now there’s a great Howard Leight SALE at Sportsman’s Warehouse. Get All Howard Leight brand Safety Eyewear and Hearing Protection products at 20% OFF.

8. Palmetto State Armory — Springfield M1A Sale + Promo

m1a springfield

The Springfield M1A has an historic military heritage and is fun to shoot. If you’ve been looking to add an M1A to your collection, check out PSA’s Springfield M1A sale. Many M1A models are significantly discounted. Plus, with Springfield’s current Gear Up Promotion you get two FREE magazines PLUS a scope mount. With the discounts and the free gear, we figure you can get over $600 in value.

9. Amazon — Real Avid Chamber Boss, $29.99

ar 15 bore brush

Cleaning AR-platform rifle chambers can be a pain, especially when it comes to removing the carbon. We found the Real Avid Chamber Boss is very effective on those dirty AR chambers and internals. The Chamber Boss includes a carbon scraper specifically designed for the AR chamber extension. This kit also include a chamber brush, and 5 special star-chamber cleaning pads. All these components fit right into the Chamber Boss’s handle, making transport simple and easy.

10. Amazon — Ninety 3″ Stick-on Splatter Targets, $7.99

splatter targets

Here’s a great set of stick-on (adhesive) splatter targets. Shots appear as bright neon yellow halos — providing easy-to-see instant feedback. The $7.99 target packs include 10 sheets of black circles, 3″ in diameter, for shooting out to 300 yards and beyond. In addition, each sheet includes 8 smaller red center bulls plus 22 stick-on black dots. You can shoot the entire target sheet, or peel off one or more circles to stick on a target backer. These also work great indoors with pistols.

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May 10th, 2020

If You Could One Just One Long Gun — What Would You Choose?

Sierra Bullets Gun list .30-06 Springfield .308 Winchester
Custom hunting rifle photo courtesy Kilimanjaro Rifles.

The folks at Sierra Bullets asked a few staff bulletsmiths a classic question about guns: “If you could own only one firearm which one would you choose?” There were many interesting answers including a “cheater” response — the drilling — which is really two guns in one. The most-often mentioned chambering was the venerable .30-06. Respondents cited its versatility, hunting prowess, and ready availability of ammo. The popular .308 Winchester, as expected, got mentions as did its cousins the .243 Win and 7mm-08. There were quite a few votes for classic lever guns, as well as 12-gauge shotguns. Two bulletsmiths cited the .22 LR, and we can certainly see the logic in that answer. The little rimfire cartridge is versatile, quiet, and inexpensive.

We ask our readers the same question — if you could only have one long gun, what type of firearm would it be? List the gun type and chambering in the comments section.

If You Could Have Just One Long-Gun — ANSWERS:

Media Relations Manager Carroll Pilant answered: “I would NEVER own only one gun. If I HAD to pick one, it would be a drilling in 12 gauge over .30-06.”

Ballistic Technician Rich Machholz answered: “The early tang safety Ruger M77s pretty much have all you could want in a bolt gun, but I do like the Winchester lever guns and the combination guns, particularly the drillings. Since I have the first two, I’m going for a Doug Turnbull 1886 or a side by side 20 gauge over .223 drilling.”

Ballistic Technician Philip Mahin answered: “More than likely it would have to be a bolt action .30-06. The reliability is legendary on a wide range of game animals and factory ammunition has still been available at my local stores even in these tough times.”

.30-06 Springfield cartridge diagram

Ballistic Technician Duane Siercks answered: “If I had to boil it all down to one gun, it would probably be a .30-06. I have a Remington 700C (custom shop gun) that has worked very well for anything and everything I have ever wanted to do with it.”

Ballistic Technician Paul Box answered: “A .22 Rimfire.”

Chief Ballistician Tommy Todd answered: “Remington 700 in .308 Winchester.”

Sierra Bullets Gun list .30-06 Springfield .308 Winchester

VP – Sales & Marketing Matt Reams answered: “A light weight Kimber in 25-06.”

Production Toolsetter Brad Vansell answered: “Savage weather warrior 7mm-08 is my rifle of choice.”

Production Toolsetter Dan Mahnken answered: “The .308 Winchester rifle — [based on the] wide range of bullets made and the wide range of things that one can hunt with it.”

Process Engineer David Palm answered: “Savage action 243 Winchester.”

Ballistic Technician Gary Prisendorf answered: “Probably a .22 LR. It may not be the best choice, but you could use it for about anything if you really had to.”

Production Manager Chris Hatfield answered: “Beretta A300 Outlander 12 gauge.”

Machine Shop Manager Craig Westermier answered: “12 gauge shotgun.”

This article original appeared in the Sierra Bullets Blog.

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May 7th, 2020

The 22 BR — A Great Ultra-Accurate Varmint Cartridge

6mmBR 22BR 22 BR BRA varmint cartridge

22 BR Dasher 22BRAThe 6mmBR Norma cartridge has spawned many great variants in multiple calibers: 6mm Dasher, 6BRA, 22 BR, 22 Dasher, 30 BR and others. This article is about a handsome 22 BR Rem-action varmint rig.

Richard Franklin (who operated Richard’s Custom Rifles prior to his retirement), has built scores of varmint rifles, in many different calibers. One of Richard’s all-time favorite varmint rifles is a 1:14″-twist, 22 BR built on his Model 11 stock in laminated Black Walnut and fiddleback maple. Richard says the rifle is versatile and deadly accurate out to 400 yards. Richard uses a Leupold 8.5-25x50mm LRT with varmint reticle.

Richard’s 22 BR Varmint Rifle with Lilja Barrel
Richard tells us: “[Shown above] is my light walking varminter. It’s built on a blue-printed Stainless Steel Remington 700 short action and chambered as a no-turn 22 BR for Lapua brass. The bolt handle is a Dave Kiff replacement and I’ve fitted a Jewel BR trigger with bottom safety. The barrel is a Lilja, 1:14″ #6 contour with a muzzle diameter of .750″. I shoot the 40gr V-Max bullets in the rifle at 4000 FPS. It’s tough on hogs if you don’t try them too far. 400 yards is about the max with it.

Accuracy is outstanding and with Roy, Mike, my grandson and myself shooting this rifle I don’t believe it has missed more than three hogs out of over 100 we shot at one summer. This rifle is carried in a ceiling rack in the truck where it’s handy and is used by the first person that grabs it when a hog is sighted if we are moving between setups. The Varmint reticle on the Leupold (shown below) is nice for quick hold-overs as you change distances.”

At right is a another Franklin Model 11 stock in Birdseye maple. That photo shows the details of the thumbhole stock.

Editor’s Note: We have shot a 1:8″-twist 22 BR in varmint matches and it was very accurate with 80gr bullets. It actually shot flatter out to 500 yards than our 6mmBR running 105-grainers. If we were to build a new long-range, bolt-action varmint rifle it would probably be a 22 BRA, essentially a 22 BR with 40° shoulder. That gives you a very stable cartridge with a bit more capacity. The 22 BRA retains a longer neck compare to the 22 Dasher, which is also an excellent cartridge — versatile and accurate.

22 BR Rivals 22-250 Performance
With bullets in the 40gr to 60gr weight range, the 22 BR gives up very little in velocity to a 22-250, despite burning quite a bit less powder (30-32 grains for the 22 BR vs. 35-38 grains for the 22-250). With a match-quality chamber, the 22 BR will probably have an edge in accuracy over a 22-250, and you should experience longer barrel life. Here are some recommended 22 BR loads for 40-60gr bullets:

For more info on the 22 BR for varminting, read our 22BR Cartridge Guide

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hunting/Varminting 1 Comment »
May 3rd, 2020

Bargain Finder 241: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. McMillan Fiberglass Stocks — Big Sale, up to 33% Off

McMillan Stock Sale

Are you looking for a very high-quality, premium fiberglass stock for your next hunting rifle or tactical rifle project? Now’s a great time to buy — McMillan Fiberglass Stocks is running a Major Stock Sale with substantial savings — up to 33%. Currently 19 popular models are on sale including A3, A4, A5, Z-10, Game Scout, XTR, McMillan Hunter and more. NOTE: While this sale was set to end Monday, May 4, 2020, the McMillan website still lists sale prices for many of the items — but don’t delay. See all sale stocks at McMillanUSA.com.

2. CDNN Sports — Remington Camo R15 16″ Barrel, $399.89

remington mossy oak camo camouflage short barrel AR15 MSR gun

Here’s a great-looking compact Modern Sporting Rifle Kit for hunters. This is a good value, with Remington R15 Upper and Lower finished in Mossy Oak Breakup Camo. Parts include Bushmaster 2-Stage Match Trigger, Aluminum handguard, and Yankee Hill Flash Hider. Price is great — just $399.89. But take note — this Kit is NOT ready to shoot. This Rem Kit is sold without bolt carrier group, charging handle, and magazine. But those are easy to purchase (or borrow from another AR-platform gun). So remember, buyers must supply their own bolt carrier group, charging handle, and magazine. It’s still an excellent value.

3. EuroOptic — Nikon Riflescope Closeout Sale

Nikon black scope sale

Nikon’s decision to stop selling riflescopes has created an amazing opportunity. If you’re in the market for a hunting or tactical scope, check out EuroOptic’s Nikon Closeout Sale. EuroOptic has a big selection — Tactical Closeouts starting at $99, ProStaff Closeouts starting at $109, and Nikon BLACK scopes discounted up to 40% off. Choose MOA or MRAD versions with a variety of reticle options. NOTE: The BLACK FX1000/X1000 Series Nikons are quality tactical scopes proven in PRS/NRL competition. (FX1000s are FFP.) You’d have to pay hundreds more to do much better. At just $449.95, 40% off the original price, the 4-16x50mm FX1000-FFP MRAD is a steal!

4. Midsouth Shooters — Big Rimfire Ammo Sale, All Types

17 hmr .22 LR 22LR .22 WMR midsouth ammo ammunition sale

Ranges are starting to open up, so grab your gear and go. It’s always fun to shoot rimfire rifles, as quality training ammo (such as SK or Norma) can be a tenth the cost of factory centerfire ammo — 12 cents/rd vs. $1.20/rd or more. Midsouth Shooters has a wide selection of rimfire ammo from Aguila, CCI, Hornady, Federal, Lapua, Norma, SK, and Winchester. There are many varieties of the most popular rimfire ammo types: .17 HMR, .22 LR, .22 Short, and .22 WMR. Midsouth also has some .17 Mach2 and .17 WSM.

5. Natchez — RCBS ChargeMaster Lite, $219.99

Chargemaster Lite Midsouth Sale

Do you need an electronic powder scale and dispenser? Check out this great deal at Midsouth Shooters Supply. Suggested retail for the ChargeMaster Lite is $299.99. Amazon’s best price for this unit is $289.99. But now you can get it for just $219.99 at Natchez. So you can save $70.00 with this sale! Put the money saved into bullets or powder. The RCBS ChargeMaster Lite is the modern second generation Scale/Dispenser, descended from the original ChargeMaster. The ChargeMaster Lite features an easy-to-use LCD touchscreen. Dispenser precision is plus/minus 0.1 grains. The unit comes with twin check weights and a convenient plastic cover for the powder pan.

6. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Ruger 9mm SR9 Pistol, $249.97

ruger sr9 9mm compact pistol handgun

We’ve shot the Ruger SR9 9mm pistol and we like the ergonomics MUCH better than a Glock. The SR9 is comfortable with a slim, ergonomic grip, reversible backstrap, and narrow stainless slide. The Ruger SR9 also includes ambidextrous manual safety and magazine release, built-in Picatinny rail, and adjustable high-viz 3-dot sight system. If you are looking for a standard 9x19mm pistol (4.14″ barrel), this is a great value — $249.97 at Sportsman’s Warehouse

7. MidwayUSA — Packs of Sight-In Targets or Spots, $3.74 Each

midwayusa target diamond stick-on sale discount

Here are two target products we really like, both deeply discounted this week. The Caldwell Shooting Spots Combo 12-Pack offers BOTH 1″ diameter and 2″ diameter day-glo orange self-adhesive dots with inner diamonds. You get 36 big dots plus 72 small dots in the 12-Pack for just $3.74. For Load Development we like the Caldwell 9-Diamond Sight-in Target 10-Pack. Each sheet has NINE blue double diamonds inside circles. The 16″ wide paper backer also has boxes for your load data, chronograph values, gun info, and group sizes. You can also get the 9-Diamond 10-Pack for just $3.74.

8. Brownells — Wipeout Foam Cleaner, $14.99

wipeout cleaner

Walking the firing line of the Berger SW Nationals this year, one cleaning product was mentioned over and over again and for good reason. Sharp Shoot R Wipe-Out foaming bore cleaner is a no-nonsense, easy-to-use bore cleaner that does a great job. We get best results with two applications of Wipe-Out after some wet patches. If you’re tired of long brushing sessions, give Wipe-Out a try — it really reduces brushing required. This is a great deal. The same 5 oz. can is $24.95 on Amazon.

9. MidwayUSA — Caldwell NRR 23 Youth Ear Muffs, $11.24

midwayusa NRR 23 youth kid ear muffs hearing protection

Young people are the future of our sport. Every shooter should have an extra pair or two of kid-sized earmuffs for those days when you have the chance to bring a young person to the range. Right now MidwayUSA has a great deal on Caldwell Youth Ear Muffs. For just $11.24, these 23 NRR-rated Youth Muffs are available in three kid-pleasing colors: Hot Coral (Red/Orange), Neon Blue, and Neon Green.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Optics, Reloading No Comments »